Kakko Leads by One in France

By Sports NetworkJune 7, 2008, 4:00 pm
European TourFRANCE -- Roope Kakko carded a 3-under-par 68 in wet, windy conditions Thursday to grab a one-stroke lead after the opening round of the Saint-Omer Open.
 
Marcus Higley, Adrien Bernadet, Mikko Korhonen and John E. Morgan are one shot back at minus-2.
 
Steven Jeppesen, Jan-Are Larsen and Gareth Maybin share sixth place. Those three are the last players in red figures at 1-under-par 70 on the Val Course at Aa Saint Omer Golf Club
 
With many of the top players in the world playing the U.S. Open this week, the field this week was filled by players from the European Tour as well as the Challenge Tour.
 
Kakko started on the back nine and opened with a pair of pars. He dropped in his first birdie putt on the par-four 12th. Kakko reeled off 10 straight pars from there.
 
The 26 year old from Finland sank his second birdie at the fifth. Kakko birdied the par-5 ninth, his last, to gain the first-round lead.
 
'I was really pleased with my round, and not dropping any shots was the key,' Kakko stated. 'I putted well and didn't make many mistakes, which was pleasing in weather like this. I teed off at 9:30 a.m. (local time), so it wasn't as bad for me as the guys who went out early. But it was still pretty bad.'
 
Higley traded a bogey for a birdie from the 11th to open his round. After eight pars in a row, he dropped a shot at the third. From there, Higley birdied five, seven and nine to share second.
 
Bernadet also started on the back nine. He birdied the 11th, but gave that shot back at the 13th. The Frenchman came right back with birdies at 14 and 16. After seven straight pars, he faltered to a bogey six, but rebounded to birdied his last, the ninth.
 
Korhonen had a bogey-free front nine with birdies at one, five and nine. He tripped to a bogey at 11, but rebounded with a birdie on 15. Korhonen dropped another shot at the last to finish at minus-two.
 
Morgan had a fairly benign round. He parred the first eight holes of both nines, then birdied the ninth and 18th to share second.
 
The Englishman has lost his playing privileges, but it wasn't a case of losing his game. In 2004, he was diagnosed with epilepsy.
 
'The epilepsy obviously set me back a fair bit, and unfortunately I can't really control it. It's in my brain, and if it wants to come alive, then it will,' Morgan explained. 'In the last three weeks, I've had three fits, so I'm not sure it's really under control. It's been difficult. On one of the recent Challenge Tour events, I had a fit on the practice ground just before I was due to tee off. Luckily for me, they let me tee off five minutes late.
 
'But I guess it's one of those things. All I can do is keep plodding on. Hopefully one day I get my chance again, and hopefully I take it. I'd love to be back on the European Tour again, and I think I can get there.'
 
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  • Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

    Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

    Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

    ''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

    They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

    ''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

    Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

    ''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

    Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

    Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

    Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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    Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

    Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

    Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

    Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

    Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

    The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

    Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

    Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

    Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.